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Spinal Decompression in Ellicott City

How does Spinal Decompression work?

spinal decompression illustrationWhen a bulging or herniated disc slips out of alignment, it may compress nearby nerves. Compression can block the nerves from sending and receiving messages from the central nervous system and brain, leading to chronic pain. If compression continues, damaged discs seldom heal, and patients will suffer pain and other symptoms.

Spinal Decompression

Spinal Decompression creates space between the different vertebrae, providing room for the bulging or herniated disc to be drawn back into its central position in the spine. This relieves pressure on the nerves and the surrounding soft tissues. By reversing the effects of axial load or compression in the spine, increased circulation occurs which facilitates the flow of nutrients, oxygen, and fluids back into the disc which helps stimulate the body’s healing mechanism.

If you have been living with persistent neck, back, or sciatic nerve pain caused by herniated or degenerative spinal discs, you do not necessarily have to take medication or resort to surgery to find lasting relief.

Spinal decompression therapy, a groundbreaking treatment that involves the meticulous mechanical stretching of your spine, is a gentle, non-surgical way to instantly relieve disc-related pressure, stimulate blood flow through your spine, and promote long-term healing.

We offer spinal decompression to help many men and women overcome chronic disc-related pressure and pain, even when traditional chiropractic adjustments, massage, physical therapy, and other common treatment options have failed to provide full relief.

Here’s how spinal decompression works and what you can expect during treatment.

back on trac chair

Spinal Decompression Basics

Spinal decompression is performed on specialized equipment with the aid of advanced computer technology. It operates under the same basic principles chiropractors have been using for decades to stretch the spine and provide effective pain relief.

The therapy works by slowly, steadily, and gently stretching your spinal column to alleviate abnormal pressure on the discs that sit between your vertebrae. Using an exceptionally precise stretching action, it creates a negative pressure inside your discs that causes them to retract. This creates a reverse vacuum that helps draw protruding disc material back into place.

Spinal decompression also promotes increased blood flow to your spinal discs that encourages nutrient-rich fluids and oxygen to flow inside, where they promote cell renewal, tissue repair, and long-term healing.

The main goal of spinal decompression therapy is to provide immediate pain relief and promote an optimal healing environment for several spinal disc conditions, such as:

Bulging Discs

Spinal discs that have been pushed outside of their usual space in the spinal canal can put pressure on nearby nerves, causing localized pain or pain in other areas of your body. Left untreated, a bulging disc is likely to eventually rupture.

Herniated Discs

Spinal discs that crack and leak some of their soft interior gels have ruptured, or herniated. The gel from a herniated disc can irritate nearby nerves and may even cause a burning sensation that radiates from your lower back into your legs.

Degenerative Discs

Discs that are affected by age-related degeneration may have low fluid or tears in their tough outer shell. They may also lead to the development of painful bone spurs that impinge on your spinal nerves.

An Effortless, Gradual Process

425x425 placeholderSpinal decompression therapy is done on specially designed equipment. In our office we use the Ergo-Flex Back on Trac system, a very comfortable motorized chair in which the upper half of the chair remains fixed, while the lower half moves when activated by a highly specialized computer program. Your personal treatment protocol is based on various factors, ranging from your body weight and spinal condition to the duration of your symptoms and your level of sensitivity.

After activating the chair, the lower portion gently slides down and up, or down and holds, and can also move back and forth laterally, depending on the setting, slowly lengthening your spine and alleviating pressure from injured, damaged, or dysfunctional discs and joints.

During this slow, gentle treatment, your spine will be alternately stretched and relaxed, taking pressure off inflamed or impinged nerves.

Although you may experience significant pain relief after your first couple of sessions, most people can expect to obtain long-lasting pain relief once they complete their prescribed treatment cycle.


Back-on-Trac by Ergo-Flex provides additional treatment options for back pain, herniated discs, sciatica, stiffness, tight muscles, and the ability to decompress the spine. Back-on-Trac is a comfortable and relaxing way to receive non-invasive treatment that combines heat and vibration with gentle stretching to provide long-lasting relief. Back-on-Trac provides 21 treatment protocols to deal with various problems and is handicapped accessible.

Key Benefits of Back-on-Trac Treatments:

  1. No unnerving restraints or belts: Unlike yesterday’s treatment solutions, Back on Trac offers therapy without all those cumbersome restraints and belts.
  2. Long lasting relief since ALL the important areas are targeted: Back on Trac therapy is delivered through gentle stretching of the spine, joints, and a wide range of important muscles, including those in the back, neck, hips, and thighs.
  3. A non-invasive solution that works: An effective solution that works for chronic back pain.
  4. The treatment feels great: You start out seated and Back on Trac gently leans back while providing vibration and heat while making you feel relaxed
  5. 10 minute treatment time: Here is a treatment protocol that doesn’t take up your entire day.
Back on Trac is Effective in Treating:

  • Lower Back Pain
  • Facet Syndrome
  • Herniated Disc
  • Protruding Disc
  • Extruded Disc
  • Sciatica
  • Spondylosis
  • Spinal Fusion
  • Degenerative Disc Disease
  • Pain Management
  • Pain Reduction
  • Pain Elimination
  • Spinal Stenosis

Bulging, Herniated and degenerative discs are often the root cause of many people’s neck or back pain.

If you’ve been told you have one of these disc problems that’s causing your pain, you may also be looking for an alternative to drugs and surgery.

Non-surgical spinal decompression is a gentle and effective treatment for spinal disc problems. It may help you avoid injections, pain medications, and even surgery.

Research Proves it is an Effective Treatment

According to the Shealy-Borgmeyer study, non-surgical disc decompression was 92% effective in relieving pain due to a problem disc. The Odell Study revealed that 80% of people showed 50% or more pain relief 4 years after treatment with 92% resuming normal activities. More research studies are available on ErgoFlex’s website. The takeaway from these studies is that decompression is safe, effective, and a long-term solution for disc related problems.

How Your Decompression Treatments are performed:

Your doctor uses your MRI, X-Ray, and examination findings to determine the disc that is the root cause of your pain. A harness system is used to specifically pull apart or “decompress” the problem disc. There is a programmed pull phase and rest phase that the computer will cycle through specific to your body type and disc problem. This allows fluid to re-enter the disc and reduce pressure on the nerve.

Our tables are comfortable and fully automated to make your session as pain-free as possible. A trained technician is available throughout the session to ensure comfort and safety. Many patients find the treatment so relaxing; they fall asleep during the session.

Frequently Asked Questions

How long does a session take?

Your sessions are custom tailored to your condition. Treatment time can be anywhere from 10-25 minutes. Research indicates the best long-term satisfaction and pain reduction is achieved with 20-30 sessions over a 12-week period. Your treatment plan will be determined by your doctor.

Most patients notice an improvement within 3-6 treatments while some notice a change after only 1 session.

What can YOU expect?

Decompression therapy is most commonly a part of a comprehensive plan. Your care may include chiropractic adjustments to restore normal joint function, pain relief therapies such as cold laser, soft tissue work, and cryotherapy, and specific exercises to strengthen and stabilize your spine to give you the best chance of returning to normal activities. The healthier you and your spine are, the less likely the chance of problems returning.

Who can benefit from Spinal Decompression?

Anyone who has back pain or neck pain caused in part by a damaged disc may be helped by spinal decompression therapy. These conditions include herniated discs, protruding discs or bulging discs, spinal stenosis, sciatica, leg pain, leg numbness, and arm pain, arm numbness, or radiculopathy (pinched nerves) and certain types of headaches.

Decompression may also benefit those who’ve already had spinal surgery. Your doctor will determine your eligibility for the treatment. Certain conditions prohibit the use of decompression.

Advanced Chiropractic Care You Can Trust

Although you may experience significant pain relief after your first couple of sessions, most people can expect to obtain long-lasting pain relief once they complete their prescribed treatment cycle.

Experience Long-Lasting Relief

If you’re struggling with chronic back or neck pain due to bulging, herniated, or degenerative discs, our state-of-the-art spinal decompression therapy could be the solution you’ve been seeking. Schedule your consultation with World Class Chiropractic today.


Spinal Decompression Ellicott City, Columbia MD | (410) 461-3435